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PC System Factors
As I probably reiterate in too many places on this site, the components in a PC system are interrelated, and affect each other's performance in many ways. This makes it difficult to measure the performance of any component in isolation. Some tests are better able than others to isolate the component being tested, but it also depends on the component. Hard disks are virtually impossible to completely isolate from the rest of the system, because every access of the hard disk involves a transfer through the main processing subsystems, and thus involves almost all of the main components of the PC.
Various parts of the PC not only affect the way a hard disk benchmarks; they also affect the real-world usability of the storage subsystem as a whole. In this section I take a look at some key issues related to the PC system as a whole and how they influence hard disk performance.
Next: CPU Speed